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TRNC government had little choice on water issue

13 February 2016

The text of the agreement between Turkey and North Cyprus on the administration of the water transferred from Turkey to the TRNC has been published by Turkish Cypriot newspapers.

Turkish Cypriot daily Afrika argues that the Turkish Cypriots have “sold out” to Turkey on the issue. All that is required are signatures from the North’s Prime Minister Omer Kalyoncu and Turkish Deputy Prime Minister responsible for Cypriot Affairs Tugrul Turkes for the agreement.

According to the provisions of the agreement, the administration of the water has been monopolised. Article 7 of the agreement it states that “the part of the provided water which will be used as drinking and utility water is operated by a single administrator in the TRNC”. Article 8 provides that no other institution or organisation of the private or public sector could be given the right to administrate the water during the initial period of administrating the water.

Moreover, only Turkey will have the right to sell the water to third countries. Also, the municipalities’ installations will be handed over to the private company which will administrate the water. The company will pay for usage 10% of the turnover from the water sale to the finance ministry and not to the municipalities.

Article 13 of the agreement says that the immovable properties required for the activities of the enterprise will immediately be expropriated by the TRNC government and will be given to the administrator without any payment from the latter.

Article 11 provides that the private company which will administrate the water will be exempted from any legal obligation and no work or residence permits will be required for its top ranking personnel.

According to Kibris Gazetesi, PM Kalyoncu said that they do not have the luxury to negotiate management details on the water issue.

He added that he thinks that at this stage regarding the administration of the water, there is not much that they can do. He explained that that obviously, the one who brings the water to the island can dictate the conditions. If these are not met, the water will not be delivered.

Kalyoncu noted that it made no difference as to who was in government in the TRNC, the outcome would have been the same. It was time to conclude the matter, he said.

Afrika, Kibris Gazetesi

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